Queen praised for giving 'wonderful recognition' as she bestows great honor on the NHS

Royal fans are thrilled that the Queen has done this

The Queen
(Image credit: Photo by Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The Queen has been applauded by royal fans for bestowing an incredible honor on one of her country's most incredible assets. 

A post shared on the official royal family Instagram account confirmed that Her Majesty has awarded the George Cross to the NHS. 

The George Cross is the highest award for non-military courage that the sovereign can bestow. and the Queen penned a touching hand-written note to confirm the special news. 

It comes as the National Health Service, which provides the UK with health care that is free at the point of use, marks its 73rd birthday, following one of the toughest periods of time it has ever faced. 

Thanking NHS staff for all they have done during the pandemic and over the past 73 years, the Queen wrote, "It is with great pleasure, on behalf of a grateful nation, that I award the George Cross to the National Health Services of the United Kingdom.

"This award recognises all NHS staff, past and present, across all disciplines and all four nations.

"Over more than seven decades, and especially in recent times, you have supported the people of our country with courage, compassion and dedication, demonstrating the highest standards of public service," she continued, before adding, "You have our enduring thanks and heartfelt appreciation."

The Queen NHS nurses

(Image credit: Photo by Chris Radburn - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The Queen, who has been residing at Windsor Castle since she left Buckingham Palace ahead of the UK's March 2020 lockdown, was bombarded with kind words from her loyal supporters, who are delighted by her gesture to the NHS. 

"Such a wonderful recognition," one wrote. 

"Wow, well deserved 👏," added another, while a third comment read, "Thank you Your Majesty. There is no individuals more worthy of this award."

The work of the NHS undoubtedly holds an even more personal and poignant meaning for the Queen, following the death of Prince Philip in April of this year. 

Her late husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, was cared for by NHS staff at St Bartholomew's hospital in London in the weeks before he passed away at home in Windsor. 

Philip thanked the staff that looked after him for their care in a statement, after he was discharged in March after 28 days battling an infection in hospital.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were set to celebrate the NHS' huge milestone with a tea party at Buckingham Palace today, however Kate Middleton was forced to pull out, having been in contact with someone who tested positive for Covid. 

It is believed that just Prince William will attend the socially distanced get together in the gardens of Buckingham Palace, while the Duchess self-isolates at their Kensington Palace home. 

Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla also made sure to send their love and respect to NHS staff and volunteers, sharing a touching post on the Clarence House Instagram account. 

"The Prince of Wales recognises and thanks all NHS staff and volunteers across the country for their dedication, 'sheer resilience and indomitable spirit' - we are so grateful for all that you do. 💙," the sweet statement read. 

Caitlin Elliott
News Editor

Caitlin is News Editor for woman&home, covering all things royal, celeb, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. Caitlin started on local papers and titles such as Cosmopolitan, Now, Reveal and Take a Break while studying for her Multimedia Journalism degree. She also worked in Fashion PR as a Press Assistant for Arcadia's Topshop before becoming a part of the Now team. Caitlin went on to add the likes of Woman, GoodtoKnow, WhatToWatch and woman&home to her writing repertoire before moving on to her current role.